Australia's Minister for Trade Simon Crean said on Monday that the U.S. decision to impose a 35 percent punitive tariff on imports of Chinese tyres sends a wrong signal.
"The timing of the U.S. decision to impose a 35 percent tariff on imports of Chinese tyres is unfortunate, coming in the lead-up to the G20 meeting in Pittsburgh," Crean said in an interview with Xinhua.
"Whether or not the U.S. is legally justified in doing so, it sends the wrong signal," he said.
The U.S. order raised tariffs for three years on the imports of Chinese tyres -- by 35 percent in the first year, 30 percent in the second and 25 percent in the third. The first tariff will come into effect on Sept. 26.
The decision was opposed by the U.S. tyre industry. The Tyre Industry Association (TIA) said that it was "deeply disappointed" with the decision.
Crean said "governments need to step back from measures that retard trade. Improving access to world markets - not closing them- is needed to boost the global economy and employment."
"Cases like this make it all the more urgent to conclude the Doha Round to strengthen the rules-based multilateral trading system, which is still our best insurance against protectionism," he added.
China has asked for talks with the United States on the tyre tariff issue in accordance with the World Trade Organization (WTO)dispute settlement process.
Chinese Ministry of Commerce Spokesman Yao Jian said China firmly opposed trade protectionism and discouraged the use of trade remedy measures.